Rules to follow. Voices to obey. Discipline for wrong choices. Most anywhere we go, we find these constants. And, everyone we meet, depending on the season and situation at hand, falls on the spectrum from complete and willing obedience to absolute and extreme rebellion.
Although a self-proclaimed “rule-follower,” there have definitely been times I have broken the rules, threw caution to the wind, and followed the voice of “me,” instead of the voice of authority. Like you, in these circumstances, I have had to face the music, reap the consequences of my disobedience, and receive discipline.
Rebellion, when called out on the carpet, often results in chaos, strife, pain, and regret. The panicked excuses and blame-shifting transition to accountability, realization of the fallout, sorrow, and repentance. Can hope be found in times like these? Is there a silver lining to the storm clouds threatening such destruction?
The answer is undeniably, yes! Let’s look at an example in scripture. Zephaniah wrote about the defiance of Jerusalem and the hope found in God.
Woe to her who is rebellious and defiled, the oppressive city! She obeyed no voice, she accepted no discipline. She did not trust in the Lord, she did not approach her God. … The Lord is righteous within her; He will do no injustice. Every morning He brings His justice to light; He does not fail. But the criminal knows no shame (Zephaniah 3:1-2, 5 NASB).
Even in the midst of Jerusalem’s reckless abandonment of righteousness, God was still present—with her and within her— bringing His righteousness. As sure as the sun rose every day, He revealed His justice without fail. Regardless of the unjust not recognizing their sin, God was still found faithful.
The same is true for you and me. God is omnipresent and with us always…in our seasons of obedience AND in the midst of our rebellion. He has promised to never leave us. He has deposited an earnest of His presence in us who have been born again. His tender mercies are new every single morning. Yet, none of us are perfectly obedient every single day.
In the darkness of our reckless abandonment of Him, God continuously brings justice to light. When we are blinded by distractions and desires apart from Him, He remains faithfully with us and within us. Regardless of the looming consequential storms of our insurrections, the Light of God breaks through to rescue us.
Jesus led justice to victory for all who call upon Him. We have this hope and can trust God in His faithful mercy because of the gift of His Son. He became sin for us, that we may become His righteousness. Jesus paid the debt for our rebellion so we could be justified. He is the Light of the world and the Voice of Truth. He is the unfailing silver lining—the hope we have—every single day and in every single situation. Trust Him.
Holding Fast to Hope,